~ MEMBER PROFILES ~
A Florida transplant, Mary is a writer and a visual artist who finds much inspiration on both levels in the natural environment of Florida.
Mary won a poetry prize upon her graduation from the College of Notre Dame of Maryland and went on to win a national prize for an essay about First Amendment rights, published in “American Voices.” She has had a short play produced and won a national award for a single poem from the National League of American Pen Women, where she a member in Arts and in Letters.
Her work for the past 35 years has always been about patterns—in buildings, in people, and in nature. She believes that there are always patterns to be illuminated, and has tried to do that with oils, pastels, watercolor and silkscreen—and, of course, with writing.
In her professional life, Mary worked for more than 25 years for the Johns Hopkins University as a writer/editor and continues to work for freelance clients around the world.
T. S. PAGE
T. S. Page has authored over 600 works, some of which she has begun to publish recently, appearing in various online journals. She has been a student of philosophy, language, and poetry at the University of Florida, the University of Freiburg, the University of Colorado, and Jungian psychology at the Naropa Institute. She has recently been published in the Florida State Poets Association Poetry Contest winners edition of Cadence. Her first Poetry Chapbook, Heliotrope, A Woman's Turning, is available on Amazon.
SUZANNE S. AUSTIN-HILL
Some are surprised that Suzanne S. Austin-Hill is a wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother. She lives in a house built on what used to be a thriving tomato farm in Ruskin, now a crowded suburb of Tampa, FL. Over a decade retired, this internationally recognized mathematics educator successfully transitioned from technical endeavors to more soulful forms of expression as an author, photographer, and poet. Dr. Austin-Hill’s work has appeared in Lifestyles AFTER 50, Deaf Devos, The Tampa Bay Times, The Washington Post, and two anthologies. Her photographs have been recognized statewide at such venues as the Florida Museum of Photographic Arts and the Tampa Museum of Art, among others. Additional photographs have accompanied print material published in The News of Sun City Center and Of Poets & Poetry and on the cover of a short story collection. She has penned hundreds of poems; many recognized on the local, state, and national levels. Suzanne is particularly proud of the poems published by 805 Lit + Art, Newtown Literary, Lucky Jefferson, O Miami, the Sandhill Review, and Cadence Anthology of the Florida State Poets Association. Her first book of poetry, Sixty-seven pages from the Heart, is a testimony to her belief that poetry is an ointment, an elixir, and a tonic that pours out from the heart. Available at Amazon.com
SALLY WAHL CONSTAIN
Sally Wahl Constain of Ponte Vedra is a valuable member of our chapter here at North Florida Poetry Hub. She is an accomplished author and an award-winning poet. Her background is that of an elementary school teacher and librarian in Astoria, New York for 34 years. She is also a respected member of the local literary scene, having held the position of president of the Riverwood Writers Group at Del Webb, Ponte Vedra for three years. She is often requested to be a speaker at book clubs and writers' events and to pen ekphrastic poems for artist exhibits.
Sally is a Letters member of the National League of Pen Women. Her debut novel, The Keys to Fanny, a work of historical fiction, was recently selected as book of the month by the Florida Writers Association. She has also published a poetry chapbook, Sometimes I Wonder, and Random Reflections, a memoir in the form of an anthology of essays and poems.
Sally is happiest sharing her creative endeavors with friends and family members, husband, Eddie, son and daughter-in-law, Bill and Nicole, and grandsons, Robby and Greg.
Sharon Scholl is a retired college teacher of humanities and contemporary world studies at Jacksonville University. She is active as a musician and poet, having had a long tenure in church music. She maintains a website of music and poetry suitable for liberal churches and creates choral compositions for the Soul Matters curriculum. freeprintmusic.com
Long active in Northeast Florida poetry circles, she convenes A Gathering of Poets twice a month at the Ponte Vedra Library and volunteers as editor for the Women Writing for (a) Change collective. She has a book-sized collection, Timescape, and chapbooks Unauthorized Biographies, Summer's Child, and Seasons available via Amazon.com.
Howard Moon, a retired broadcaster and professional writer having been a columnist for the Ocala Star Banner and other publications. He is of Native heritage and lives in central Florida, spending his time writing poetry and flash fiction. Visit his Website at: www.halfblindpoet.com
Howard has published four books:
Poems from A Shattered Brain – Living With Mental Illness,
White Fox – A Collection of Native American Poetry
Zombies Are Not Vegetarians
Outside Looking In
His latest release:
"Breakfast Poems", one of the North Florida Poetry Hub "Poet's Pen Project Limited Edition series was released in September, 2021 and is available in his Etsy shop. Books Are Available on Amazon - Click Here To Purchase:
Chris Kastle is an award-winning singer, storyteller, songsmith, author, artist and educator from St. Augustine, Florida. Chris was presented with the Annette J. Bruce Lifetime Achievement Award by the Florida Storytelling Association and is the author of the critically acclaimed book of short stories, “From the Icy Fingers of the Deep,” as well as three CDs of music and spoken word.
Pat Krause lives with her husband of 50 plus years in Ponte Vedra, Florida. As a member of Del Webb’s Riverwood Writes and the Florida State Poets Association (North Florida Poetry Hub, local chapter), she enjoys writing poems, prayers, reflections, and essays often incorporating her photographs. Several of her poems have been featured in their publications. Pat’s faith, love of nature, and personal relationships inspire her writing.
PAULA VELOSO BABADI
A happy and valued addition to the North Florida Poetry Hub membership base, Paula Veloso Babadi loves God, her family and words. She wrote her first poem, about hope, when she was eight. For many years her writing was dormant while she pursued a career in the health care industry after serving in the Navy Nurse Corps. She is board Chairperson of the St. Johns Chapter of the Catholic Writers Guild (CWG), regular contributor to St. Joseph’s Reflections Magazine, past “Poet’s Voice” columnist and occasional guest writer for the Catholic Writers Guild blog. Her book, "Everywhere Hope", captures life experiences and wraps them in a triple package of prose, poetry and pictures. Her book can be found on Amazon. "Everyday Hope" awakens readers with uplifting and insightful stories and poems to rekindle the power and presence of hope in their daily lives. Eloquently written, this collection is a journey to be experienced more than once. Book #1 in the "Everywhere..." book series is disarmingly honest, emotionally accessible, and meant to be savored in all ages of life. Everywhere Hope delivers on its promise.
RUTH VAN ALSTINE
One of our North Florida Poetry Hub members, Ruth Van Alstine, has been writing poetry since a young age and writing poetry for the past thirty-five years and more recently branching out into memoirs and stories. She also has recently begun exploring the creation of mixed media and abstract artwork with complimentary ekphratic writings.
An award-winning poet, she has published three books of poetry Fairies and Fantasies in 1996, Shattered Moonbeams in 2016, and A While Away. She has been published nationally and internationally, some of which include The Parnassus of World Poets Anthology, Anthology in Memoriam 1999 by Bristol Banner Books, Cadence, and (a) River Rising Blooms. She published the very first edition of North Florida Poetry Hub's publishing project of limited-edition books, "Poet's Pen Volume 1".
She is a member of the Ancient City Poets of St. Augustine, National Federation of State Poetry Societies, Florida State Poets Association, and President of the North Florida Poetry Hub and is an active participant in Women Writing for (a) Change of Jacksonville, Florida.
In 2016 she established Rising Moon Press and works with poets to publish “The Poet’s Pen” and with other authors on various projects as her time allows. Rising Moon Press specializes in unique, small volumes of handmade limited-edition chapbooks and Zines.
(Author. Storyteller. Keynote Speaker. Educator.) Shutta Crum is an award-winning poet and children’s book writer. The winner of seven Royal Palm Literary Awards, she’s an oft-requested speaker and presenter at writing conferences, libraries, and schools. Her chapbook: WHEN YOU GET HERE (2020), won a gold Royal Palm. Her newest book is THE WAY TO THE RIVER. In addition, her poems for adults have appeared, or are forthcoming, in numerous publications and literary journals. This includes the Ann Arbor Review, Stoneboat, Typehouse, Blue Mountain Review, Orchards Poetry Journal, Better Than Starbucks, Main Street Rag, Nostos, Southern Poetry Review, Acumen, Mom Egg, Calyx, and Boulevard.
In addition, she is the author of thirteen picture books and three novels for young readers published by major publishers: Alfred A. Knopf, Clarion/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Albert Whitman, and Fitzhenry & Whiteside. In 2005 she was invited to read at the White House, and in 2010 toured Japan presenting to the students of the Dept. of Defense schools.
Shutta is delighted about what poetry can bring to one’s life. It was through poetry that she met her husband. When they married he brought with him his two children. Now, those children have given her grandchildren. “Poetry has shaped my whole life,” she says. “When I look at those grandchildren, I see poetry.”
Contact Shutta at: Website ~ www.shutta.com , Facebook ~ www.facebook.com/Shuttacrum , Twitter ~ @Shutta, Instagram ~ www.instagram.com/Shuttacrum
MS. CYNTHIA BUTLER JACKSON
Hi, my name is Cynthia Butler Jackson. My objective is to never become a victim nor be silenced again. I am a published out-of-the-box existentialist: writer; poet; spoken word Artist; history realist; and freedom activist, and I am also a humanitarian socially seeking ways to promote better well-being for myself as well all mankind without self-sacrificing…
Although my writings are viewed by some as out-of-the-box they’re also enthused by others as trauma-informed wisdom, a trove of jewels. Innate written and spoken to shine scintillate lights into dark places. My cache includes: A Mother’s Justice; Speak Sister; Now Go; Juneteenth Those Mirrored Chains; Before the Deities Famine; Sweet Naomi; Branches of Sweet Naomi; The Waymaker; Something About Black; The Soul Of My feet; He Thinks He Knows Me; Letter To My Younger Soul “We Are Free; A Piece Of You, A Child Place; This is About More than Hair and Lip Stick; Take Up Your Bed, My Darling Dears, and Windows With No Innuendos, just to name a few.
You can also find my writings and posts on
NUALA MOLLOY MORAN
An accomplished Poet, writer, and songwriter joins us at North Florida Poetry Hub, Nuala Molloy Moran. Visit her website "Pennydanger" to read some of her beautiful poetry. From Nuala's words; "I'm a Poet, Writer, Artist. I grew up loving words and poetry. I like to write on a variety of subjects." She also enjoys writing lyrics, taking photos, and creating art.
Her lighthearted collection of poetry, Lyrical Liaison’s was published in 2007. One of her poems, "For The Victims & Their Loved Ones”, inspired by the tragedy of September 11th, was featured in the Sun-Sentinel of Fort Lauderdale, 2011 in a special 10th Anniversary Edition the newspaper published.
In December 2020 Nuala's second book of poetry was published, Out & About, a limited edition Volume 2 of "The Poet's Pen".
BONNIE L. BOUCEK
Bonnie L. Boucek has a deep love for poetry and writing. She houses a humanitarian, spiritual, and entrepreneurial spirit which encouraged her to become a Poet, Fibromyalgia Creative Life Coach, Logically Creative, Visionary Educator, and Reverend. She’s an avid cat lover. She views them as an extended family. She’s also a bibliophile (her favorite collection: 700+ paranormal novels).
An artist and poet - In his words….. “I am a Syrian refugee in Turkey. Because of the ongoing, yet never-ending conflict in Syria, I may be destroyed but not defeated. Thus, I made my name as an international English teacher and a man of letters regardless of being displaced, homeless, and the boundless yet unlimited hurdles which I have, and still do encounter on a daily basis, yet I survive.”
Mehmet Güneş was recognized by the British Council in December 2011 and awarded a travel grant for artists under the British Council’s Arts Development Grants. He was nominated and awarded a scholarship for Jordan and Morocco under the Cultural Exchange agreement. He has had his poetry published in The World’s Poetry Archive June 2011, Poetry Rivals Collection 2011- Words Everlasting in the United Kingdom. Mehmet currently works at the Nineveh School in Ankara, Turkey.
We welcome Shani Hall to the North Florida Poetry Hub, a poet, writer, artist and all-around multi-talented individual who pursues many paths of artistic expression.
"My passion is sharing my stories with you through the swirls and twist of color from my brush, though the promises of delight capture by the shutter click, or though the birth of new worlds arranged by pen on paper - each representing a unique piece of my world for you to enjoy."
Check out her website to pick up one of her latest books or published poems.
“I fell into art in the Spring of 2019 and began a journey of discovery, redefining myself apart from PTSD and anxiety. Every day I aspire to find or create something beautiful - building on moments to pull myself up and out of the traumas; a gossamer rope I weave from pain to promise.
My art springs from this sacred space when I shift perspectives. I am awakening into who I could be and how I might release the creativity still bound within me. This is my Resiliency Project. I invite the audience to delve beyond a first impression and engage with the images and stories driving each piece and especially each other…” -Laura Dill
Laura is an emerging Visual Artist and Writer working in acrylics, photography, mixed media, poetry, and essays. She is self-taught and her artworks reflect a broad range of expressions and subjects ranging from bold, vivid abstract paintings to capturing contemplative moments revealing the beauty and fragility of our world. She welcomes this once unimagined journey and finds her courage in all forms of art and nature, striving to heal, and transform through brush, pen, and lens.
Laura’s paintings, photography, poetry and writing have been published in multiple Anthologies and exhibited in Galleries throughout Jacksonville, NE FL Beaches and St. Augustine in Solo Exhibition, Juried Exhibitions, and in Downtown Jacksonville Public Art Projects. She has also exhibited and presented art and poetry internationally via virtual platforms and streamed performances. Her artworks, photography, writing, and poetry are preserved in the Stanford Permanent Archives and Florida State University Archives.
Contact Laura for Signed, Limited Edition Photography, Poetry, original Paintings, and hand embellished Limited Edition Giclée’s or other artworks via email, phone or her website.
Perspectvz@gmail.com LauraDillArt.com 904-343-5434 / 800-720-7065
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North Florida Poetry Hub is a chapter of the Florida State Poets Association and was created by the local nonprofit Hope at Hand, Inc. to support and help the arts flourish for poets, writers and lovers of all things poetic and artistic in the North Florida region.
POETRY. WELLNESS. HOPE ~ Hope At Hand is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides art and poetry sessions to vulnerable and at-risk youth populations. Using creativity, language, art and therapeutic approaches, we facilitate healing and personal growth for children and adolescents.
Learn More: HopeAtHand.org